a simple request

“Will you do something to help me go to bed? Will you just pat my back for a few hours?”

-Alice Munchkin Kidling

August 31, 2012

Google-copter parenting (a miseducation)

The Kidling is curious. Very curious. As such, she asks a lot of questions to which I do not know the answer. Many of them I once knew (in fourth grade), but others of them I honestly don’t have a clue. Unfortunately, she has been asking quite a few questions recently about human evolution and the origin of man. The sciences being an area in which The Mama did not excel in school, I speak in broad strokes. And Google.

Thank God* for The Google.

Okay, so I didn’t describe this chart. Or anything even remotely similar. Or anything else containing more than a smidge of accuracy.But isn’t this the coolest thing you’ve seen all day?

Which is all to say that yesterday after work, whilst driving about town running our errands, The Kidling start asking me questions about early humans. I did my best to talk about the general ideas while safely carting us from Point A to Point B. I verbally described this chart at right. We (somewhat inaccurately) discussed early mobility. I might or might not have included discussion of knuckle-walking. Which might or might not have been entirely inaccurate. Who keeps up with these things, really? The Kidling was fascinated with the idea of using knuckles for balance and support (and whatever else I erroneously told her), and wanted to know just how far back we were talking when I mentioned, “early humans.”

Alice: So my grandparents used to?

The Mama: No, sweetie.

Alice: I don’t understand!

The Mama: I know. It is kind of heard to wrap your head around.** Imagine that your Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma’s Grandma did. They are related to modern humans. You wouldn’t even recognize them.

Alice: But I would still ask what their name is and I would not eat a poison apple because I know when someone’s tricking me. I’d just run away. I’d just run away like crazy!

Human evolution… Stranger Danger… I’m not certain which of us is more confused.


* By “God,” I mean Gods. And by “Gods,” I mean Larry Page and Sergey Brin.

** Because The Mama hasn’t a damn clue what she is talking about and we need to get The Kidling a real science teacher STAT before I screw up her education before it even starts.

the poopy girl

Sunday afternoon, The Kidling was doing her business. Yes, that business. What, you expected something else from a post titled thus? Silly readers…

As I was saying: business. Upon completing said business, Alice turned to toss a handful toilet paper into the toilet. She bent over, then stopped suddenly, exclaiming, “I almost got my face in it!’*  Ew, right? Well, guess what I said…


Given that she is no fool, Alice agreed with my assessment of ickiness. She offered, “Yeah, it’s not funny. It’s funny because it didn’t happen. (pauses briefly, thinking) Then I’d be the poopy girl. Walkin’ around town.”

I have nothing more to say.


* While I did just say that I had nothing more to say, can I just take this opportunity to say THANK GOD there was an “almost” in that sentence? I cower at the thought of what would have happened had her little kidling face actually gotten covered in… well… business.



I learned how to parent reading The Huffington Post

Can a person interrupt herself? If so, then I interrupt my regular programming with an atypical post. (Did you read that in an announcer’s voice? No? Then go back and read it again. Seriously. Now.)

Monday, I read this article by Melissa Sher on HuffPost Parents. If you aren’t the link-following type, then I will summarize:

Melissa told a story of a particularly frustrating morning at home. Nothing was going as it was intended, and conclusions were jumped to. Admonishing herself, she recalled a friend’s recent Facebook post about her own daughter:

“Maggie comes to me all excited and proud. She then proceeds to break a brand-new crayon in two. ‘Maggie!’ I say, ‘Why in the world did you just break a brand-new crayon?!’ And she looks at me all wide-eyed but the joy and pride that was there a second ago is gone. And then she burst into tears, saying between her sniffles, ‘I just wanted to show you how strong I was!'”

Which is to say:

  • Don’t freak out about little things.
  • Don’t assume the worst.
  • Don’t crush your child’s spirit because you are busy.

Okay, so that is offensively reductionist, but you are the one who refused to click the link. You reap what you sow.

Being the social media-loving mama I am, I shared this story on my personal Facebook timeline, with the comment, “I should probably read this every day. Every single day.” (Yes, I repeat myself for effect in real life, too. God I am an exhausting human being.)

THE VERY NEXT DAY—not later in the week, not next month, not around the holidays—a situation like the one Melissa Sher described came to my attention for the first time. I very nearly said that it happened for the first time, but I doubt that to be the case. I was likely just ignorant of the circumstances on previous occasions.

The Kidling, as usual, was displaying less-than-stellar dinner table manners. I calmly told her to stop making “gross sounds” at the dinner table. She changed to a new sound, but persisted. So, of course, to time out she went.

After a few minutes, I went to talk with her about it. Any guesses what she told me? Earnestly she said, “But Mom, I wasn’t making gross sounds. That was part of my song. I was making music.”

And I had humble pie for dessert.


Love is a many-splendored thing…

In the early stages, it is exciting. New. It makes our hearts race and, rather inconveniently, forget how to talk. Later, it gets us up in the morning and provides a companion we know and trust. And always, it makes our heart soften a bit at the thought of our beloved. But why do we love who we love? What is it that makes someone the object of the most intense of human emotions? I, for one, haven’t the faintest idea.


Too many drinks?



Facial symmetry?

An evolutionary need to pair, mate, and produce off-spring, thereby continuing one’s genetic traits through one’s progeny?

“For some reason, I like the shape of your head. For some reason I like the look on your face. That’s why I love you so much. And. For some reason I like the look on Dad’s face because I love him so much.”

The Kidling has it all figured out. I should have known.

the hotline

“If you need help, just call 1-2-3-ape-D-E and ask for Girl Superhero Kitty to come help. I’ve got a mask and a cape and everything.”

-Alice Munchkin Kidling, er, I mean Girl Superhero Kitty

August 26, 2012

the proposal

Wednesday was rough. You see, The Kidling started pre-school this week. Though she loves it, she is tired. Fatigued. Exhausted. Plum worn out. And, though you know The Kidling well, dear readers, you might not know that when she is tired she turns into a monster. After a particularly difficult evening, we had this conversation at bedtime:

The Mama: (tucking Alice in) Good night, Sweetie. Happy dreaming.

Alice: Will you sleep with me?

The Mama: No, Baby. I’m not going to bed yet.

Alice: Why do you always sleep with Dad and not with me?

The Mama: Well, we are married. That’s how it works.

Alice: Why?

The Mama: People who are married usually sleep in the same bed.

Alice: Can I be married with you?

The Mama: You have to be a grown-up.

Alice: Can I be married with you when I’m grown up?

The Mama: No—


The Mama: Well, Sweetie—


The Mama: Alice—

Alice: BWAAAAHHHH! Why can’t I be married with you?

The Mama: We can talk about it when you grow up.


The Mama: Well, Moms aren’t allowed to marry their kids.

Alice: BWAAAAAAAHHHHHHH! Why won’t you marry me?!

The Mama: It’s just against the rules, Sweetheart.

Alice: BWAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Why can’t kids marry their moms?

The Mama: Because we are already a family, Alice. When you get married, the idea is to make your family bigger. Since we are already a family, we don’t need to get married.

Alice: BWAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH! But I want to be married with you!

The Mama: I know, Sweetie, but those are just the rules.

Alice: But I want to live here!

The Mama: If you want to live here, then we can talk about that when you are bigger.

Alice: No! I want to live here!

The Mama: Okay.

Alice: I don’t want to get married.

The Mama: That’s up to you. You don’t have to get married if you don’t want to.

Alice: (pauses to think) But I still want the cake.

no fair

“Why do you guys get to stay up all night and I don’t? Even when I’m a big kid and you’re big kids, too?”

-Alice Munchkin Kidling, whilst stomping back up the stairs

August 16, 2012